When you’re watching the world’s best players take part in this month’s Women’s Australian Open, there’s a chance you will relate to at least two things straight away: (1) the distance they hit their driver; and (2) the type of approach shots they need to hit into the green.
The average driver clubhead speed on the LPGA Tour is 94 miles per hour, with an average ball speed of 139mph. This equates to an average driving distance of 200 metres, or 220 yards. This is also the average clubhead speed, ball speed and driving distance of male amateur golfers in Australia. Interesting, eh?
If you’re unsure of your clubhead and ball speed, you should check in with your local PGA professional to get your data. If you’re like the thousands of Aussie golfers whose speeds and distances are similar to our leading ladies on tour, maybe it’s time you started to play more like them. Why not try swinging more within yourself to create greater consistency with your shot-shaping and distance control?
While LPGA players don’t boast the same driving distances as their male counterparts on the PGA Tour, they do have unbelievable short games. The best women golfers rely greatly on their approach shots to counter any lack of distance off the tee. You’ll also notice they have the same length backswing and follow-through, while the key changes they make are with their rotational speed and the wedge lofts they use. Both these changes directly affect ball flight and shot distance – and could save you a stack of strokes over the course of the year if you follow suit.
I highly recommend you see a PGA professional at your club to check your driver’s loft, length and shaft flex. Have your wedge combination checked as well to make sure you have the correct loft and bounce on your wedges for your course.
Your scorecard will thank you for it.
Jason Laws is the NSW PGA Teaching Professional of the year and if you have any questions, e-mail him at [email protected]